flyting and rap

Amy West medievalist at W-STS.COM
Mon Jan 5 18:19:00 UTC 2009

A museum colleague forwarded this link to me:


I don't know much about rap's origins beyond the connection to
playing the nines, but I'm skeptical of this claim based simply on
the fact that there are probably (again I come up against my
ignorance) many African analogues of flyting that are much more
likely candidates for playing the nines ancestry.

I know that there are Old English and Old Norse analogues as well, so
why limit it to medieval Scotland?

And the 1861 poem that is cited could easily be influenced by those
OE and ON analogues as that's the time period for the rise of OE & ON
philology (and there was plenty of use of medieval literature in that
time period: a couple of colleagues have looked at the use of King
Arthur in popular literature from both the Union and the Confederacy).

Anyone more knowledgeable and better informed than me willing to weigh in?

---Amy West

The American Dialect Society -

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